I told you his story back in February of this year. My earlier article titled Help Identify Beloved Doe, about a little boy possibly three, four, or five years old, who was found in March of 2003 in a dumpster at the Willow Creek Apartments in Houston. His tiny body weighing only 18-28 pounds was wrapped in an afghan. He was wearing only a diaper with bears on the front. Someone had placed him inside a red and white checkered bag. He had died of starvation and dehydration, and in the final phase of death, this little boy was thrown away like a bag of trash.
Those working his case lovingly called him Beloved Doe. Tuesday night that little boy was identified by relatives who viewed his story on a Spanish speaking television show. The boy whose long auburn eyelashes were one of Beloved Doe’s most distinctive features. The boy is believed to be five year old Jose Bernardo Martinez, the son of thirty year old MaDana Martinez. She is also the mother of three other healthy children. Yet, healthy or not what kind of mother is MaDana Martinez? MaDana Martinez was arrested today, and charged with a first degree felony murder and injury to a child by omission. She could face a maximum sentence of life in prison. Jose's father claims the mother told him his son was in a hospital and she would not allow him to visit the boy. Again I state the obvious, for five years this boy was left unidentified, are we to not wonder how the mother kept the father "form visiting his little boy" for five years?
There were two surgical scars on his abdomen and on the side of his neck, does show evidence of the little boy having a medical illness or condition which may have played into his death. Yet that does not negate the fact that he has been dead and unidentified for five years. What mother can look in the mirror day after day knowing her little boy is dead and lying alone in a morgue or buried nameless? Truly it will not matter what illness the boy had that may have played a part into his death, because in the end when he needed to be held and loved, he was instead starved and allowed to die. He died an undignified and painful death, one that no one should ever have to suffer through.
Starvation is a long arduous process, often taking days, weeks, or even months. Tonight as I read that Beloved Doe was identified allowing him to claim the name he was given in God’s love, Jose Bernardo Martinez, I cried and held my own children close. My daughter is 14 and often wonders out loud “why do you torture yourself mom writing and reading about lost children”. My 10 year old son exclaimed “how mean some parents are to their kids!”
I do it for only one reason, the children who deserve to be known and heard. I do it because if even only one child comes home, if only one child is identified by what I am writing than it will be worth the sleepless nights, thousands of tears and even the nightmares. As I told my children tonight I do it because if something happened to them I would never stop looking for them, until I found them and brought them home.
I wrote the first story on Jose Bernardo Martinez, because it bothered me for years that a little boy had no name. After all every child has a name and every child deserves to be identified and buried properly. No one should die alone, no one should be tossed out like a bag of garbage, and no one deserves to remain unidentified.
Now I challenge every reader, that someone knows the name of each and every unidentified child in the numerous cold case files out there in our world. What is stopping you from calling the police? The biggest coward is the one who denies a child their life, and a proper identity.
Some one knows what happens to the children who disappear with out a trace in our many communities. Someone simply needs to come forward and tell the authorities where our children are and what happened to them? The biggest coward is the one who reads this, knows something about a missing or unidentified child, and he or she still chooses to keep quiet. After all it is a choice.
The silence is deafening. Break the silence and give the children eternal peace, and give their families their child back. Parents and siblings need to know what happened and where their baby is now to have the peace of knowing their baby is no longer being hurt. Break the silence and tell someone what you know, or remain the heartless coward you are and know one day you will answer to a higher power than a child’s parent.
Until next time Jose Bernardo Martinez, sweet baby, you rest in peace! Welcome home!